Mobile operator Turkcell ready to launch 5G, says CEO

Mobile operator Turkcell ready to launch 5G, says CEO

Mobile operator Turkcell ready to launch 5G, says CEO

Turkcell’s network, Turkey’s largest mobile operator, is “5G” ready, company CEO Kaan Terzioğlu has said.

“Actually, with the existing frequencies we have, we can launch 5G even today,” Terzioğlu told journalists at a meeting on Dec. 10.

“We have already tested 5G with the millimeter wave spectrum as well, and we have reached 70 gigabits per second speeds on this,” he added.

Terzioğlu noted that the mobile operator has all the necessary ingredients including carrier aggregation technology as well as massive antenna technology.

“For us 5G, unlike other countries, is not a next generation technology. We already have these capabilities,” he said.

The executive also noted that in Turkey Turkcell has two major technology partners, Huawei and Ericsson, sharing almost 50-50 of the company’s infrastructure.

“We actually did our commercial break tests on 5G both with Huawei and Ericsson and in addition to that with Samsung as well.”

Terzioğlu is confident that Turkey and Turkcell will be one of the first 5G commercial services in the world.

Asked about the recent detention of Huawei’s CFO in Canada, Terzioğlu said: “I believe that the world has to be global. We have to respect international trade.”

The Chinese company’s executive, Meng Wanzhou, was arrested on Dec. 1 in Canada. She faces U.S. claims that she misled multinational banks about Iran-linked transactions, putting the banks at risk of violating U.S. sanctions.

On Dec. 11, Meng was granted bail by a Canadian court while she awaits proceedings on whether she will be extradited to the U.S.

Stake sales

Meanwhile, Turkcell yesterday sold its shares in the Netherlands-based telecommunication company Fintur. 

The transaction came after the shareholders of Fintur agreed to transfer its subsidiary Kcell to Kazakhtelecom.

“A binding agreement with respect to the transfer of our shares in our 41.45 percent owned subsidiary Fintur to Sonera Holding, the other shareholder of Fintur, was signed on Dec. 12,” Turkcell said in a statement, issued to the Public Disclosure Platform (KAP).

The value of the transaction is anticipated to be some 350 million euros ($396.4 million).

The transaction is expected to be completed following the transfer of Kcell to Kazakhtelecom and the procurement of other regulatory approvals, it said.

Terzioğlu called the announcement a milestone for the company’s focus on digital services and strong balance sheet strategies.

“Subject to the FX rates and balance sheet position on the closing date, the contribution of this transaction to Turkcell’s profitability is expected to be approximately 850 million Turkish Liras [some $70.86 million],” Terzioğlu said.

Earlier yesterday, Fintur sold its total shareholding [51 percent] in Kcell to Kazakhtelecom, a fixed line operator controlled by Kazakh government, for $771 million.

Fintur, through its subsidiaries, provides mobile telecommunication services in Azerbaijan, Kazakhstan, Georgia, and Moldova.